“Equipped with a childlike voice — think Joanna Newsom — Surma masters every instrument that is around her. She studied double bass in a jazz school, but that never stopped her from learning every instrument she could reach. Her sonic blend combines ambient music, post-rock and jazz influences. The result? A really unique, warm and intimate sound. Ethereal melodies created by a one-woman-band that will take you to another place.” – Europavox
“An exquisitely beautiful first track, it’s truly an otherworldly journey – through a shimmer guitar line, and Umbelino’s Björk-esque vocals – there’s elements of Portishead and Daughter thrown in for good measure. This demands repeat listens.” – Crack In The Road
Surma has already appeared on the most important portuguese festivals and toured Spain, France, UK, Sweden and Germany. The young artist plays guitar and bass while her music is an unusual mix of different electronic sounds. She combines these sounds with the help of loop pedals. The result is wonderful music that lies in between jazz and ambient music. The Portuguese musician has only just started her career with the release of her debut album last October in Portuguese market. Talks are on the way for other territories. Being confirmed for the 2018 editions of Europsonic and SxSW, Surma has crafted an intimate sound that is all her own, the multi-instrumentalist is proving why her voice truly has to be heard.
22 year old Portuguese solo artist Surma presents a body of breathtaking sound designs and heartwarming tracks on her debut record, ‘Antwerpen’ – out now on Omnichord Records. Following a promising glimpse with what to expect on ‘Hemma’, Surma AKA Débora Umbelino takes us deeper into a 10-track journey though her cosmic psyche. By taking in angelic lullabies and ambient orchestrations of beatific, mind-opening sonic environments, the record leaves the listener pining for a primal, yet peaceful existence. With every track labeled in a different language, translating to elemental words like ‘place’, ‘travel’, and ‘origin’, the music somehow embodies the stillness of ‘home’ in an ever-shifting world.
Citing her home town Leiria as ‘wild, young and free’, this local lifeblood also courses through Surma’s debut record, from the enticing opener ‘Drög’ to its hauntingly choral conclusion ‘Uppruni’. The elegantly crafted, ‘Kismet’, solidifies Surma’s ‘one-woman band’ reputation as her child-like vocals and synth pads soak the listener in a style reminiscent of Björk or a more ambient Imogen Heap. The track ends with violins delicately fading away, signifying another genre-hop typical of ‘Antwerpen’s versatility.
With Portugal proving to be the latest hotbed for new talent, Surma is clearly emerging from a vibrant scene including First Breath After Coma, Nice Weather For Ducks, Whales and Few Fingers. As Surma lets go of the truly ethereal collection of tracks contained within ‘Antwerpen’, the crackling sense of excitement builds. Watch them weaving spells and working magic, like a network of glistening vines embedding in a growing global consciousness…